New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

On Behalf of NJ’s Children, Pennacchio & Webber Thank and Appreciate Advocates for Their Support of Child-Protection Legislation

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Legislation (S-2917/A-4442) sponsored by Senator Joe Pennacchio and Assemblyman Jay Webber has earned the support and advocacy of Prevent Child Abuse New Jersey and the New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault.

A bill sponsored by Sen. Joe Pennacchio and Asm. Jay Webber to protect school children from chronic abusers has earned the support and advocacy of Prevent Child Abuse New Jersey and the New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault. (©iStock)

The legislation would tighten-up reporting and disclosure requirements between and among education employers so that chronic child abuses will not escape detection or get recycled through the system to prey again on other children at different schools. The legislation would remedy the problem of insidious silence that has permitted the migration of child predators between and among schools and our children.

Prevent Child Abuse New Jersey and the New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault have joined forces to push for sponsorship and passage of this child-protective legislation, according to their joint statement in support of S2917/A4442.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Named “Guardian of Small Business”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Passaic, Essex, Morris) was honored by the National Federation of Independent Business New Jersey chapter for his support of small businesses throughout New Jersey.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio was named a “Guardian of Small Business” by NFIB New Jersey. (©iStock)

“I’m happy to fight for small businesses, because they do so much for our state and their communities,” Senator Pennacchio said. “These are family-run operations and they put a lot of time and hard work into growing and protecting jobs for their employees. They will always have my support.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Sen. Pennacchio & Exonerees, Advocates Call for Action on Bipartisan Bill to Reduce Wrongful Convictions in NJ

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State Senator Joe Pennacchio, alongside exonerees, advocates, members of the NAACP, Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean and Senator Anthony Bucco, held a press conference on Oct. 5 calling on Legislative leaders to immediately act on his bipartisan legislation, S-3045, to reduce wrongful convictions in New Jersey.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio (at the podium), NAACP NJ President Richard Smith, Lesley Risinger, Founder of The Last Resort Exoneration Project; and AJ Nash, a wrongfully convicted and exonerated man, speak at an Oct. 5 press conference calling on Pennacchio’s, S-3045, to reduce wrongful convictions in New Jersey. (SenateNJ.com)

“Our  criminal justice system isn’t perfect. Even for an innocent person with an ironclad case, the journey towards exoneration is a steep climb, and the road to getting the restitution they deserve can be even harder,” Senator Pennacchio said. “I put forward a bipartisan solution to find out why the system is failing so many people months ago. The wrongfully convicted of New Jersey shouldn’t have to wait any longer for this Legislature to take action.”

Senator Pennacchio’s legislation (S-3045) would establish “New Jersey Innocence Study and Review Commission,” which would be charged with developing reforms to prevent wrongful convictions statewide. Inmates who are wrongfully convicted in New Jersey spend an average of ten years behind bars  before exoneration, according to the National Registry of Exonerations.

S-3045 was introduced in February. Following recent high-profile news reports of ongoing wrongful conviction cases, Sen. Pennacchio called the press conference to shed light his legislation.

“I strongly support Senator Pennacchio’s efforts to seek justice for wrongfully convicted individuals in New Jersey, Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said. “Clearly, there is a critical need for this legislation. I hope that it will advance as swiftly as possible.”

Pennacchio was joined at the press conference by two people who were wrongfully convicted and exonerated: Rodney Roberts  and A.J. Nash.

Rodney Roberts  spent 17 years behind bars before being exonerated by DNA evidence and released from prison in 2014. A.J. Nash spent a decade seeking justice before being exonerated in 2013.  Both men are listed in the National Registry of Exonerations.

Also participating in the press conference were Lesley Risinger, Director of The Last Resort Exoneration Project at Seton Hall Law School, and NAACP New Jersey State conference President Richard Smith.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Steve Oroho

Pennacchio & Oroho Urge Congress to Pass Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) and Senator Steven Oroho (R-24) today urged the U.S. House of Representatives to pass The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which would criminalize abortion after 20 weeks, with exceptions for, rape, incest, or when the life of the mother is at risk.

The House is scheduled to vote on the legislation today, and President Trump reiterated his support for the bill yesterday.

Sens. Joe Pennacchio and Steven Oroho urged Congress to pass The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The House will vote on the Act on October 3. The senators have fought to enact the legislation at the state level. (SenateNJ.com)

“Senator Oroho and I have fought tirelessly at the state level to pass our Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, but Legislative leadership has refused to act,” Senator Pennacchio said. “Our leaders in Washington must seize this opportunity to protect innocent unborn children nationwide from the excruciating pain of abortion. Someone must stand up for their right to live full, healthy lives.”

In December of 2016, Senators Pennacchio and Oroho held a press conference with fellow pro-life advocates and a number of widely-respected medical officials to call on New Jersey’s Legislative leadership to pass their Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (S-2026.) They have made repeated calls for action since then, and yet Senate Democrats, who control the Legislative agenda, have failed to post the bill for a single committee hearing.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

MEDIA ADVISORY (10/5): Pennacchio Press Conference on Wrongful Convictions in NJ

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris, Essex, Passaic) will hold a press conference this Thursday, October 5, at 10:30 a.m. at the Statehouse to call for action on his legislation to reduce the number of wrongful convictions that occur in New Jersey.

Pennacchio will be joined by a number of advocates, including two people who were wrongfully convicted and exonerated:  Rodney Roberts, a Newark man who spent 17 years behind bars before being exonerated by DNA evidence and released from prison in 2014; and A.J. Nash, another New Jersey resident, who spent a decade seeking justice before being exonerated in 2013.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio will hold a press conference this Thursday, Oct. 5 at 10:30 am at the Statehouse to call for action on his bill to reduce wrongful convictions in NJ. He will be joined  by two people who were wrongfully convicted, and a number of fellow advocates. (SenateNJ.com)

Senator Pennacchio’s bill, S-3045, would establish the “New Jersey Innocence Study and Review Commission,” which would be charged with developing reforms to reduce wrongful convictions in New Jersey.

Pennacchio introduced S-3045 more than seven months ago, but it has not had a single committee hearing.

In addition to exoneree Rodney Roberts, Pennacchio will also be joined by members of the NAACP New Jersey State conference and Lesley Risinger, Director of The Last Resort Exoneration Project at Seton Hall University Law School, which provides pro-bono investigative and legal services to inmates seeking exoneration.

WHO: Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26), exonerees Rodney Roberts and A.J. Nash; Richard Smith and Safeer Z. Quraishi of the NAACP New Jersey State Conference; and Lesley Risinger, Director of The Last Resort Exoneration Project.

WHAT: Press conference calling for action on Sen. Pennacchio’s S-3045 establishing the “New Jersey Innocence Study and Review Commission,” to reduce wrongful convictions and provide aid to those seeking exoneration in New Jersey.

WHEN: Thursday, October 5, at 10:30 a.m.

WHERE: Committee Room 1, New Jersey Statehouse Annex.

AVAILABILITY: OPEN

CONTACT: Emily Everson, Senate Republican Office, 609-847-3600; eeverson@njleg.org

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio to Republicans and Democrats in Congress: Time to Work Together to Fix DACA

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Essex, Morris, Passaic) released this statement following President Donald Trump’s decision on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program:

Sen. Joe Pennacchio released this statement following President Donald Trump’s decision on the DACA program. (SenateNJ.com)

“I believe that President Trump made the tough, but necessary decision to end the DACA program and send the issue of immigration reform back to Congress. Sadly, Democrats speaking out against this high-profile decision are just using it as a chance to grandstand and further obstruct the administration’s policies.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Tom Kean

Pennacchio Elevated to Republican Whip

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean announced today that Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris, Essex, Passaic) has been elevated to the position of Whip within the Senate Republican caucus leadership.

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean announced on Aug. 21, 2017 that Sen. Joe Pennacchio has been elevated to the position of Republican Whip. (SenateNJ.com)

“Senator Pennacchio has been a tried-and-true leader in our caucus for many years now. The elevation to Republican Whip is well-deserved,” Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said. “Joe has consistently demonstrated a keen understanding of our legislative priorities. He has been a passionate advocate for school funding reform, protecting the innocent, and expanding our community outreach efforts. I have no doubt that as Republican Whip, he will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that every taxpayer has a voice in Trenton.”

Pennacchio previously served as Assistant Republican Leader from 2014 to 2017. He is taking over the role of Whip following the departure of former Senate Republican Whip, Kevin O’Toole.

“Kevin was a tenacious and dedicated public servant. He left big shoes to fill,” Senator Pennacchio (R-26) said. “I am incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to serve as the next Republican Whip. We have come a long way, but there is still much more we can do to cut taxes, create opportunities, and make New Jersey a better, more affordable place for everyone. I look forward to working with my colleagues to swiftly advance Republican solutions to achieve those goals.”

Senator Gerald Cardinale
Senator Joe Pennacchio

Now Law: Cardinale/Pennacchio Bill to Shorten Lines at MVC Offices

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Expiration dates for vehicle registrations will be staggered based on an individual’s date of birth rather than all expiring at the end of the month

Legislation sponsored by Senator Gerald Cardinale (R-Bergen, Passaic) and Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Essex, Morris, Passaic) to shorten lines at Motor Vehicle Commission offices is now law after it was signed by Governor Chris Christie.

A bill sponsored by Sen. Gerald Cardinale and Sen. Joe Pennacchio to shorten lines at the NJ MVC was signed into law. (Wikimedia)

“It doesn’t make sense to have everyone’s registration expire at the same time,” Senator Cardinale said. “By staggering expiration dates, we can cut down on congestion and increase efficiency at MVC offices.”

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Senator Anthony Bucco
Senator Joe Pennacchio

Bucco/Pennacchio Bill to Display K.I.A. Flag at Government Buildings Signed into Law

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Anthony Bucco (R-Morris, Somerset) and Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Essex, Morris, Passaic) to honor veterans who have made the ultimate sacrifice by requiring the “Killed in Action” flag to be flown alongside the state flag is now law after it was signed by Governor Chris Christie.

Legislation by Sen. Anthony Bucco and Sen. Joe Pennacchio requires the “Killed in Action” flag to be flown alongside the official state flag at government buildings. (SenateNJ.com)

“This helps us honor the American lives lost to protect freedom over our country’s history,” Senator Bucco said. “Commemorating those sacrifices every day at government buildings is a fitting tribute for our nation’s heroes.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Democrats’ State Shutdown Causes Pain for New Jersey

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People of New Jersey Deserve Better

Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) said that the third day of the State shutdown caused by New Jersey Democrats has brought more pain for residents of the Garden State.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio said that the third day of the State shutdown caused by New Jersey Democrats has brought more pain for residents of the Garden State. (SenateNJ.com)

“We’ve heard sad stories of young people unable to take their driver’s tests, Boy Scouts kicked out of campgrounds, and families who have had vacations ruined due to the closure of State parks and beaches,” said Pennacchio. “This is the result of continued mismanagement by Democrats who have controlled the New Jersey Legislature for the past 15 years. New Jersey deserves better.”

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